We live in a nation that promises us all an equal opportunity to achieve success and prosperity through hard work, determination, and initiative.
However, health is a commonly overlooked factor, yet is one of the most vital necessities in order to chase one’s dreams. The Affordable Care Act, also referred to as Obamacare, is intended to improve the access of health insurance for citizens all across America. As of December 19th, according to the Department of Health & Human Services an approximation of 6.4 million people have signed up for Obamacare.
This means that hundreds of more individuals will now have access to affordable healthcare coverage, but what would have happened if this Act had been repealed? After vowing to repeal and replace Obamacare throughout his re-election campaign in 2016, John McCain voted against the Graham-Cassidy legislation. He said “I take no pleasure in announcing my opposition.” Senator McCain continued, “Far from it. The bill’s authors are my dear friends, and I think the world of them. I know they are acting consistently with their beliefs and sense of what is best for the country. So am I.” Many Republican politicians in the past have acted not in the interest of the average American citizen, but in the interest of a big business and the wealthiest living among us, but not him.
Even moments before he decided to cast his nay vote on the repeal, multiple of his colleagues and even President Trump attempted to sway him into voting what they believed was best. In spite of the pressure placed on him to fall in line, he boldly displayed what it means to put the country above his own party. This decision not only brought chaos and ruckus, but it also cost him his credibility and trust with his voters back in Arizona. President Trump even went as far as characterizing his vote as a “surprise and a tremendous slap in the face of the Republican Party.” Senator John McCain knew the dangers in making his decision and of the ugly glances and remarks that he would soon have to deal with. However, it was this exact verdict that saved hundreds of Americans from losing healthcare coverage and from falling through the cracks of corruption depicted in our healthcare system. Although he had once wished to revoke the Act, it was his illness that gave him a new perspective.
In July, McCain was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer located in his brain. As a patient himself he was able to see first hand what it’s like to be under our healthcare system, allowing him to sympathize and understand the situation of so many Americans, in a way that other officials couldn’t. Such occurrence uncovered his eyes to the reality that a good health, in fact, is a necessity to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. For example, Miss M. Turner shared, “I was in pain for days and went to the ER. I discovered my uterus was full of tumors. I couldn’t pay for surgery.” She continued, “But because President Obama passed health care reform, I was able to get paid insurance and the surgery I needed to get well.
” She was able to receive the help she needed thanks to Obamacare, and return to work. It was McCain’s very own experience and change in perspective that allowed him to view things differently, but it was his brave character that allowed him to act upon it to help others, like Miss M. Turner, to receive the help they deserve.
It would have been easy for Senator McCain to simply vote yes, but he has never been the cynical type. John McCain did promise his voters to repeal-and-replace Obamacare, but he also promised to fight for the greater good for Americans and that was the promise he kept. He was able to remain open-minded enough to consider the other side of the argument and admit to himself that perhaps repealing Obamacare was not the better answer after all, and that displays more self-growth and courage than anything else. It was his fight for the larger public interest, rather than self-interest, that kept the cruel and inhumane bill from having approximately 15 million people from being thrown off of their own health insurance. His unwavering decision has not only proved his bravery and boldness in the face of difficulty but has also given millions of individuals the opportunity to chase their own American dream. When everything you’ve worked for and appreciate is on the line, which in this case was his political career, it would have been easier for him to vote yes even if wasn’t what he believed in. Instead, he emphasized his hopes for a bipartisan health care plan and put the health care needs of the American people first.
When he was asked for the reasoning behind his vote he replied with the following, “because it was the right thing to do.”